There is a lot of talk about how the Left controls Hollywood. How there is some sort of vast left wing conspiracy in the motion picture industry. As a conservative that has worked in Hollywood for over 20 years, I would like to add my opinion to the conversation.
Hollywood is a large industry made up of all kinds of people with all kinds of viewpoints. In the top tiers, Hollywood is made up of business men that care about one thing: profit. The only agenda Hollywood executives have is putting your but in movie theater seats. That being said, both parties have issues with Hollywood, and executives will back whoever is going to be more lenient to them. Conservatives have a tendency to push the whole “moral agenda” that can cost Hollywood money. Liberals tend to push the higher taxes that can cost Hollywood money. If a liberal candidate promises to leave tax loopholes for Hollywood, the execs will back them, If a conservative candidate promises not to attack cinemas portrayal of sin, they will back them.
The problem in Hollywood actually comes from further down the food chain. You see, it takes several disciplines to make a film. Most of these are artistic in nature. Artistic people tend to be more liberal thinkers. This is due to several reasons. As I mentioned earlier, censorship is a large concern for any type of artist. Art pushes boundaries, and by it’s very nature, conservative thinking is uncomfortable with boundaries being pushed. There is also the nature of the work itself. People working on a film set tend to work 12-16 hours per day. Film shoots don’t last very long, and then it is off to find another job. This type of environment generally does not go well with conservative thinking. By contrast, your average conservative would rather have a steady, long term job, and enough time off every day to be with their family.
To compound the abundance of liberal artists in Hollywood there is the movie industries hidden shame: nepotism. In general, nepotism has its advantages. In the same way that a father hands his family business down to his child, a father in the movie business will hire his son because he knows that child grew up knowing the business. The child has a better grasp of how Hollywood works by his fathers mentorship then someone who learned the business from a textbook. On set, when working insanely long hours, it is better to have people on your crew that you know you get along, and work well with. Worker tension creates problems that lead to longer hours… The problem comes from the mindset of the people who get their jobs due to nepotism. In many ways, the young, rich white kid that got his job because his father is important, doesn’t see it as nepotism, but instead sees it as white privilege. They soon feel guilt over their perceived benefit from white privilege, and try to make amends by combating other things they think of as white privilege. This leads to the strange perversion of liberalism that runs rampant in Hollywood.
At the start of this article, I proclaimed myself to be conservative. In truth, I am more “Libertarian”. I believe in the constitution, all of it. I support free speech (even speech I don’t like), and the separation of church and state (you can’t legislate to your ideas of morality). These things are usually associated with the left. I also believe in small government (The Federal Governments job is to protect the people from threats, both outside (by protecting our borders), and inside, (by making sure State Governments don’t overstep the constitution). And I support personal accountability. These things are usually associated with the right.
I believe that these principles are best kept to myself when at work. I have problems with both Democrats and Republicans. I can argue with either. Unfortunately, when I do, that person usually assumes I am on the other team.
As a department lead for both television and feature films, I have sat in pre-productions meetings where, while discussing filling out open positions, I have heard people openly say “Don’t hire him, he’s a Republican”. So learning to only voice my appropriate opinions became a necessity.
Then I made the mistake of criticizing a policy of our current administration on my social media account. I had overlooked the fact that many people who hire me for gigs had connected with me on social media. I immediately saw a decline in the number of jobs I was getting. That decline became dramatic and I soon found myself the “back up” guy on few rosters that would still hire me.
I eventually had to find a new set of clients, and hope that they don’t find out that I am not exactly like them.
By effectively eliminating, or silencing any conservative voice on set, most projects do tend to take a decisively liberal tone. So you see, Hollywood may push a liberal agenda, but it is not a premeditated conspiracy, but more of a perfect storm that attracts like minded people and excludes anyone with different opinions.